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Here's a nice one: I need a beautiful recipe book or books to give my dear friend as a wedding gift. What would you recommend?

(20 Posts)
allhailtheaubergine Sun 18-Sep-11 06:17:00

We are geographically far away from each other so I am not sure what she has already, or even what sort of food she (and her new husband) are in to these days.

I want to give her a beautiful, timeless recipe book (or books) that will still be sitting, well thumbed, on her kitchen shelf in 40 years time.

What would you choose?

bagelmonkey Sun 18-Sep-11 06:35:15

The river cottage handbooks are a lovely series.

CaptainHornblower Sun 18-Sep-11 07:26:09

Nigel Slater: The Kitchen Diaries is a beautiful book; lots of gorgeous photography.

gazzalw Sun 18-Sep-11 07:30:28

Lorraine Pascale's Baking book is full of baking ideas that will inspire and will carry your friend through life.
But can you beat (excuse the pun!) Mrs Beeton????

weevilswobble Sun 18-Sep-11 07:32:52

Good Housekeeping has everything in it. A total classic must have. My Mum had an original very old copy i got an updated 1990s version when i got married. It would be the one i kept if i could only have one.
Other than that i love Jamie Oliver. And the Hummingbird Bakery is divine for cupcakes! (strawberry cheesecake cupcakes with cream cheese topping being my current fave)

AuntieMonica Sun 18-Sep-11 07:35:03

Hummingbird Bakery books contain some beautiful pictures, but as it says, it's all about the baking and nothing else.

thehairybabysmum Sun 18-Sep-11 07:38:27

Second the good housekeeping idea! I have my nan's copy and use it the most out of all my recipe books!

Sleepglorioussleep Sun 18-Sep-11 07:46:53

Good housekeeping! Have two-the one I had for my 18th birthday and the revised one. They are a go to book and have techniques and ways to cook things rather than just recipes.

supergreenuk Sun 18-Sep-11 07:49:52

I know the perfect thing for you. Tessa kiros has a couple of lovely books. Apples for jam and falling cloud berries. Check them out.

inia Sun 18-Sep-11 07:57:33

If you think she likes Thai, then Thai Food by David Thompson is beautiful, timeless & definitive

jetgirl Sun 18-Sep-11 08:02:25

Nigel Slater - great recipes, not fussy but lovely food.
I love both of my Hummingbird books, though baking is my thing and I use them all the time. DH has never used them and I guess you want something for the couple rather than just your friend.
For basics and huge variety you can't beat Delia's complete cookery course. I know she's not hugely fashionable but it contains everything.
Nigella Lawson 'Feast' is another with a nice variety, though Nigella's style of writing can be a bit grating.
It's a shame you're not sure about what sort of things they like, as I would recommend Madhur Jaffrey's Curry Bible which has a great range of curries.
Finally, I gave my mum a Venetian cookbook a couple of Christmases ago which is beautiful, well written and stunning photos but I can remember what it's called, not very useful blush

birdsofshoreandsea Sun 18-Sep-11 08:14:24

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ireallyagreewithyou Sun 18-Sep-11 08:17:04

Cookery year! That's timeless but our of date. Idle pissed off with a cookery book tbh

Driftwood999 Sun 18-Sep-11 14:10:02

Italian Food by Elizabeth David. Not only a recipe book but also full of beautiful and rustic Italian art (with a food theme) and regional culture. That makes it so interesting and readable, you can just dip into it for entertainment or inspriation. It's so difficult to choose a present, I feel for you but so nice that you are putting thought into it.

allhailtheaubergine Sun 18-Sep-11 15:04:40

Some wonderful suggestions here. Thanks all. I shall rummage on Amazon and let you know what I choose.

I also have the Good Housekeeping book, given to me by my mother when I left home. I use it on a weekly basis.

mamalovesmojitos Sun 18-Sep-11 17:13:14

Larousse gastronomique? Food encyclopaedia, French cuisine. Impressive looking smile.

SparkyUK Sun 18-Sep-11 20:46:04

I think the Claudia Rodin books are beautiful. I have a middle eastern one and it has lovely approachable recipes as well as tidbits of cultural legends as to why things are done x way and cooking reasons as to why you do something y way (like cooking with yogurt which in the middle east would have traditionally been goats milk yogurt which reacts differently to heat than cows milk, so how to you compensate for that...)

I was given two Alice Waters one (on fruit and veg) and they have beautfil block prints at the beginning of each chapter. I've don't actually use them much though as they really rely on have super fresh and tasty produce around but I've been tempted to frame the prints in my kitchen.

Pinner35 Sun 18-Sep-11 20:48:00

I would recommend this one. Its a bit different, but fantastic.

Matsikula Sun 18-Sep-11 20:54:17

I second 'Feast' it's got a really wide range of foods in it, and a clebratory theme that makes it appropriate as a wedding present. In fact, it was one of my favourite wedding presents, and I've cooked quite a lot from it.

Sleepglorioussleep Sun 18-Sep-11 21:10:31

Hope the amazon browse fruitful. Just reread the word beautiful in title. You'll know as you have it that good housekeeping more practical than beautiful but worthwhile all the same. Some of my best wedding gifts fall into that category though-stainless steel pans and roasting tin used all the time where some dainty articles have fallen by the wayside!

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